Catholic Social Services attended the 21st annual Catholic Family Conference this Canada Day long weekend, and our CEO Stephen Carattini was invited as a guest speaker for the event.
The four-day conference was a celebration of the Jubilee Year of Mercy, with more than 2,800 Catholics from across Alberta and Western Canada attending the weekend’s festivities at Lac Ste. Anne Pilgrimage from June 30 to July 3. Attendees celebrated several Masses with celebrants Cardinal Thomas Collins, Archbishop Richard Smith of Edmonton, Archbishop Gerard Pettipas of Grouard-McLennan, and Bishop Gregory Bittman. The conference was enriched with speeches following this year’s theme, The Name of God Is Mercy.
Hundreds of attendees also stopped by our R.V. at the conference, joining us in prayer and light-hearted conversations throughout the weekend.
The conference featured well-known guest speakers within the Catholic community in Canada and the United States. In addition to Stephen, other guest speakers at the conference included Cardinal Thomas Collins, Fr. Leo Talinghug, and more.
Stephen spoke on the topic of The Good Samaritan and reflected on his personal experience with our Agency, and our Agency's work as a charitable arm of the Archdiocese of Edmonton.
“I’ve always appreciated the words of our Holy Father, Pope Francis, when he refers to the Church as a ‘hospital on the battlefield’ offering urgent care to those who are wounded—materially and spiritually. And if the Church is the hospital, then CSS can be likened to the emergency room. We are the place where the wounded may first experience God’s mercy and begin their journey of healing,” Stephen said.
CSS was a program sponsor for the Catholic Family Life Conference, which is hosted by Catholic Family Ministries.